fighting spam and scams on the Internet
"419" Scam – Advance Fee / Fake Lottery Scam
The so-called "419" scam is a type of fraud dominated by criminals from Nigeria and other countries in Africa. Victims of the scam are promised a large amount of money, such as a lottery prize, inheritance, money sitting in some bank account, etc.
Victims never receive this non-existent fortune but are tricked into sending their money to the criminals, who remain anonymous. They hide their real identity and location by using fake names and fake postal addresses as well as communicating via anonymous free email accounts and mobile phones.
Keep in mind that scammers DO NOT use their real names when defrauding people.
The criminals either abuse names of real people or companies or invent names or addresses.
Any real people or companies mentioned below have NO CONNECTION to the scammers!
Read more about such scams here or in our 419 FAQ. Use the Scam-O-Matic to verify suspect emails.
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Some comments by the Scam-O-Matic about the following email:
- This email uses a separate reply address that is different from the sender address. Spammers use this to get replies even when the original spam sending accounts have been shut down. Also, sometimes the sender addresses are legitimate looking but fake and only the reply address is actually an email account controlled by the scammers.
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: "The WBG." (may be fake)
Date: Fri, 7 Sep 2012 21:22:18 -0700
Forgive my indignation if this message came to you as a surprise. It may interest you to know that a recent update from our central data system (CDS) states that you are yet to receive your long approved fund.
As a secretary to a World Bank top Executive Director, I am very much aware of your sad ordeal towards actualizing your long outstanding payment.
FYI: Not long after the World Bank completed the acquisition process of all pending payments, I discovered that my boss connived with some top officials to divert funds already approved to settle inheritance claim, email lottery winners and international contractors.
The World Bank has already given approval for the release of your fund while my boss deliberately delay your payment and continue to demand fees from different unauthorized WB affiliates mostly from Africa, the UK and the Netherlands, all in an attempt to enrich their private accounts. I wonder why you havent notice all these while. My religion does not permit such, hence this notice.
Your fund was authorized to be paid to you through the World Bank affiliate here in US with a Reference/Claim Code Number, which was supposed to have been issued to you before now.
Upon your response to this message, I shall guide and provide you with vital details to contact the affiliate who will urgently facilitate the release of your payment.
World Bank Headquarter,Washington DC USA.
The information transmitted is intended only for the person or entity to which it is addressed and may contain confidential and/or privileged material. Any review, retransmission, dissemination or other use of, or taking of any action in reliance upon, this information by persons or entities other than the intended recipient is prohibited. If you received this in error, please contact the sender and delete the material from your computer.